Background Plastic stents in patients with biliary obstruction caused by pancreatic adenocarcinoma are typically exchanged at 3-month intervals. Plastic stents may have reduced durability in patients receiving chemotherapy. Objective To determine the duration of plastic biliary stent patency in patients undergoing chemotherapy for pancreatic adenocarcinoma. Design Retrospective, multicenter cohort study. Setting Three tertiary academic referral centers. Patients A total of 173 patients receiving downstaging chemotherapy for locally advanced or borderline resectable pancreatic adenocarcinoma from 1996 to 2013. Interventions Placement of 10F or larger plastic biliary stents. Main Outcome Measurements Primary outcome was overall duration of stent patency. Secondary outcomes included the incidence of premature stent exchange (because of cholangitis or jaundice) and hospitalization rates. Results A total of 233 plastic stents were placed, and the overall median duration of stent patency was 53 days (interquartile range [IQR] 25-99 days). Eighty-seven stents were removed at the time of surgical resection, and 63 stents were exchanged routinely per protocol. The remaining 83 stent exchanges were performed for worsening liver function test results, jaundice, or cholangitis, representing a 35.6% rate of premature stent exchange. The median stent patency duration in the premature stent exchange group was 49 days (IQR 25-91 days) with a 44.6% hospitalization rate. The overall rate of cholangitis was 15.0% of stent exchanges, occurring a median of 56 days after stent placement (IQR 26-89 days). Limitations Retrospective study. Conclusions Plastic biliary stents placed during chemotherapy/chemoradiation for pancreatic adenocarcinoma have a shorter-than-expected patency duration, and a substantial number of patients will require premature stent exchange. Consideration should be given to shortening the interval for plastic biliary stent exchange.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging